BAML is better than every EB

A pretty open person to my friends about how much I hate BofA and saw a lot of posts here hating on them lately so thought I'd share the reasons I hate them as well, feel free to chime in below on why you hate BofA.

  1. BofA would come to my campus a twice a year for info sessions and OCR. My first info session the MD stood up to the front of the podium and spent 15 minutes on why BofA is top-tier bank because they hold analysts accountable for mistakes which helps you learn. He also told a "funny story" about how he once yelled at an analyst for making a mistake. Yes, this BofA MD was bragging about how bad his culture was. Fuck BofA.

  2. At this same info session, above, we eventually broke out into networking which consists of 10 starry eyed sophomores surrounding an analyst and asking terrible questions while trying to sound smart. This analyst we were surrounding would ignore every question and spent 10 minutes talking about how much he wanted to go to Centerview and how much better it is there. I hope he didn't make it. Fuck BofA.

  3. I went to a lot of bank info sessions during recruitment and there was one info session for an Asian bank (MUFG/HSBC) type bank. An analyst gave their background at the front and mentioned he lateral'd from BofA as did the MD and VP at the info session (all 3 lateral'd from BofA at different points of their career). I raised my hand and mentioned that they all left BofA and asked what stood out about their new Asian bank that inspired them to move? All 3 proceeded to shit on BofA's culture, basically ignoring my question because of their hate for BofA. Doesn't surprise me, fuck BofA.

  4. For this same Asian bank above, I interviewed and one of my interviewers was a different associate (from the 3 above). Guess where he started his career? You guessed it, BofAbank. I asked him what led him to join his new bank and he straight up said that he hated BofA and that he would recommend that no one ever work there. Fuck BofA.

  5. I reached out to network with 2 BofA analysts I had met at the info session mentioned in reasons 1-2 and both of them scheduled times to talk with me on the phone. Both of them, 5 minutes before the call was supposed to happen, proceeded to cancel on me. I reached out to follow up on our scheduled calls and neither of them responded and ghosted me. I skipped class to accommodate their schedule where they both somehow only had 30 minutes of availability right smack in the middle of the day (both of these calls were independent of each other and purely coincidental). I decided, due to reasons 1-5, not to apply to BofA. Fuck BofA

  6. Senior year I took a physics class and we had an international TA who didn't have the easiest time speaking to the class in English. We had a TA teaching session where he went over a few homework problems and a girl there proceeded to openly trash talk him about how he wasn't clear and how he wasn't a good teacher. She then would interrupt him mid-sentence to ask him to repeat everything he said for the last 30 seconds because he wasn't being clear. She also yelled at him during this teaching session for some stupid reason that I forgot (I think the room was too hot?). Guess where she was an incoming analyst at? Yep, you guessed it, BofA. Fuck BofA.

  7. I was meeting a friend of mine at a bar when we were interns (rip BBar). I got to the bar and saw him standing next to some guy and talking. I went up to them and introduced myself to the stranger and he proceeded to ask what I did and where I went to school (a lower tier ivy). I told him where I worked and went to school and asked him the same. He then proceeded to shit on my school for 2 minutes and went on and on about how much he hated my school and how we're bottom tier and not a good place to get an education. He then proceeded to tell me he was an investment banker at BofA and went to Harvard. The twist in all this? He went to Maryland (or some other state school) for undergrad and did some weird 1 year masters program at Harvard. Not only did this guy not really go to Harvard, he also has to work at BofA so he really took an L. The worst part? My friend had just met him but I thought they were friends, otherwise I would have decked his scrawny 5 foot 6, 130 lb ass. Fuck BofA.

Feel free to share reasons why also you hate the worst bank in all of finance.

Comments (46)

Most Helpful
  • Associate 2 in PE - LBOs
4mo

A lot of "common people" know about Citi and DB...and they are, well, Citi and DB. If you tell most people you work at Bank of America, they will assume you are a teller. Bank of America doesn't have the same kind of brand as Goldman. 

Who cares if some random BB MD in S&T/ER doesn't know about a particular EB (stupid term but I'll use it for this comment)? Lol I'd argue that's more a reflection of that person being kinda clueless than the EB having less name recognition although the latter point still holds. 

I personally think BofA is a great firm and there's no denying that it has better name recognition out of finance circles (at least relative to EBs) but saying it'll position you 1000x better than any EB (and definitively saying it is better than every EB) is a huge stretch. I think the hiring people at the Googles and Facebooks of the world will know about the Qatalysts, Centerviews, Evercores, and Lazards of the world. After all, big tech companies are often mandating these firms on deals. Also, at the end of the day, PE is the most common exit out of analyst classes at both BBs and EBs. EBs will likely draw a larger proportion of people interested in PE than BBs. But pretty much everyone in PE/HF/VC will know about all of the top banks, regardless of whether they are BBs or EBs. BofA maybe gets a slight edge for F500 corp dev or startup exits but what percentage of kids are even gunning for those roles?

  • Analyst 2 in IB-M&A
4mo

Lmao salty BofA interns thinking they're above Citi's level.. BofA is Citi's peer in terms of prestige/exits and are always #4 and #5 on the League Tables. Also, pay for BofA is worse than Citi's accoring to litquidity data. Without BofA's balance sheet they would be fucked lmao. BofA gets all their league table fees from financing. 

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  • Associate 2 in IB - Cov
4mo

That didn't look right to me so i checked FT and it is correct! But then i switched it to deal value instead of fees and there is the large delta that I was expecting. Why is there such a jump between deal value and fees? Maybe deal values are more commonly reported than fees? 

image-20220709123632-1

  • Works at Bank of America Merrill Lynch
4mo

It's BofA Securities now. What a shame. I get having an integrated brand but ML was where IB and markets division derived its strength not BoA which was more of a middle market player. The ML name meant a lot to people. If you had a ML email, it was a badge of honor. Further, corporate wanted to make this move of getting rid of ML branding within five years of the acquisition but people raised hell. Took corporate two decades to make the change because of internal opposition. The only ML branding left is within the wealth management division which speaks to the reach of the brand across even retail. 

  • Analyst 2 in IB - CB
4mo

It's BofA Securities now. What a shame. I get having an integrated brand but ML was where IB and markets division derived its strength not BoA which was more of a middle market player. The ML name meant a lot to people. If you had a ML email, it was a badge of honor. Further, corporate wanted to make this move of getting rid of ML branding within five years of the acquisition but people raised hell. Took corporate two decades to make the change because of internal opposition. The only ML branding left is within the wealth management division which speaks to the reach of the brand across even retail. 

As an incoming BAML lateral can I still put my linkedin company title as Bank of America Merill Lynch lol?

  • Intern in IB - Cov
4mo

You could, it's just outdated. As someone who works there, idrc but it comes off as a bit dumb to some people. Especially if u put it now, a good amount of time after the change lol

4mo
Purple9988, what's your opinion? Comment below:

There are some legacy ML guys (mostly MDs now) who still call themselves Merrill guys since they were ML pre merger. Funny how some really care about the name - ML, BoA, BAML, BoA Securities, etc)

  • Works at Bank of America Merrill Lynch
4mo

Merrill had significantly better IB and trading divisions than BoA, which was known as a commercial bank, so the acquisition was not a cultural fit. The deal was also shady in the sense that the fed may or may not have forced it to happen. The dynamic would have almost been like if Bain was acquired by KPMG. The former is a strategy expert and the latter is an accounting one. And I tend to avoid using this word but prestige was also a huge component of the lack of cultural fit, so hence you still have people hanging on to the ML brand nearly two decades after the acquisition. 

Funniest
  • Analyst 1 in IB-M&A
4mo

I work at Lazard and routinely have to be like "it's like Lizard but with 2 A's" lol nobody knows EBs but that's fine I'm not a prestige whore outside my work.

  • Intern in IB - CB
4mo

Sure in terms of prestige outside finance, BAML is better but that's probably the only category it wins in.

If you are not concerned by prestige and want to truly understand the industry to a tee and resultantly end up being a big earner, EBs are probably the place to be. You get a shit tonne of exposure very early on and the leaner deal teams means alot of interaction with senior people plus the salary outscales BB easily at top EBs- you haven't accounted for any of this. From my interaction with people from EBs, they come across as extremely polished and capable. You can't use prestige/brand name to measure if one place would objectively be better than another. And why have you used BAML as an example- surely premier names like GS/MS/JPM would be even better brands so if that is your logic, then surely these firms are > BAML right?

4mo
200sharp200, what's your opinion? Comment below:

No, EBs are too specialized in M&A. There's a reason all the MDs at EBs come from BBs..

A BB sells M&A, ECM, LevFin, Prime Brokerage Services, etc. It's harder to make a career as an EB banker if you're only offering M&A to a client, while the banker at a BB can offer everything the bank does and is a one-stop shop. More products = higher likelihood of business.

There's a reason why every senior person in the industry tells you to start your career at a BB. BBs offer greater vastness of experience early on career by getting exposure to a variety of different deals. 

3mo
carerthosetoyou, what's your opinion? Comment below:

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  • Research Analyst in HF - Event
3mo

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